Music review by Luchae Williams
Fans of Tenth Avenue North and The Afters will enjoy Centricity’s new release ‘As long as we can breathe’ by pop rock ensemble, JJ Weeks Band. The 4 man powerhouse, lead by Jason Clint “JJ” Weeks, have certainly come a long way, having independently released 3 full-length albums prior to their major debut, ‘All over the world’, in 2013. With a classic gospel influence, that has just a tinge of country and a dollop of contemporary rock, the JJ Weeks Band have joined the CCM hot list with a sound that is not similar to anything else on the market today.
I must admit, the first 60 seconds of opener, ‘In the name of Jesus‘, had me doubting whether I could get into this album. But by the time the chorus came around the second time, I was singing along “Bring the rain/Let it fall/I will stand through it all/In the name of Jesus!” The catchy melody of the song and it’s contemporary setting reminds me of something that you would hear on secular radio stations. But with that said, the lyrical content of these songs show that these guys have their heart set on ministry. Each track is filled with messages of hope and declarations of worship.
The next track, ‘Jealous‘, with it’s soft pop/pop rock vibe, is also another sing along song. The pop-styled composition of the song brings with it a boy band feel, with lyrics that speak about living for the Lord, singing until His kingdom comes.
I enjoyed the message behind the song ‘Higher‘ – an uptempo ballad that speaks about looking higher than the raging storm. My favorite lines in the song encourages listeners to: “Look a little higher – to the way, who makes a way, lift up your eyes!” This was another easy one to latch on to.
Another encouraging song is ‘Alive in me‘. It speaks about being hard-pressed on every side, yet still clinging to the truth that the God of everything is alive in you! There are other really awesome moments on the album, such as the collab with gospel rap artist Tedashai in ‘Rooftops‘ and country flavored ‘Ahead of me‘ that really cemented my newfound love for JJ Weeks Band.
One can’t help but be impressed with lead, Jason Weeks, and his rich vocals. I found myself really moved by the way he passionately soars through ballads such as ‘Count them all‘ – a track that speaks about counting your blessings. I also appreciated the care he put into delivering album closer, ‘Love showed up‘. With heart stirring vocal during the opening seconds of the album, he crescendos into a powerful chorus that says “Love traded heaven for a manger/Called us his when we were strangers/Walked among us in the dust/Love on a cross was left to die/Rose again to give us life/When there was no hope for us/Love showed up.” He truly is a gem!
All in all, I thoroughly enjoyed the album! If you are one for classic gospel music, that ministers a solid message, then this one is for you. The songs have been thoughtfully penned and Jason Weeks’ gifting is undeniable. What a great listen!